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Maintenance Technician

As a maintenance technician, you will be responsible for the repair, inspection, and maintenance of trucks and other vehicles. Depending on your specific job title, you may specialize in certain areas like engine repair, suspension and steering systems, braking, manual transmissions, electrical systems, collision repair, etc. If you are someone who is technically inclined and enjoys working on vehicles, becoming a maintenance technician may be a perfect career fit for you!

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What Does a Maintenance Technician Do? 

Maintenance technicians generally work in automotive service shops and car dealerships. Not only do they facilitate the repair of vehicles, but they work to maintain a vehicle’s longevity as well. This includes providing an array of maintenance services such as oil changes and routine inspections.

Some other responsibilities of maintenance technicians include but are not limited to:

  • Troubleshoot and identify issues using diagnostic equipment 
  • Perform basic care and maintenance
  • Change oil
  • Check fluid levels 
  • Rotate tires
  • Replace worn parts such as brake pads, sensors, and batteries

It is also the duty of a maintenance technician to communicate clearly with customers. As a technician, you will likely be familiar with all things automotive, but remember, the best technicians are those who can translate their knowledge into a language their customer base can understand.

How to Become a Maintenance Technician 

You can either complete a certificate program or earn an associate degree to become a maintenance technician. Certificate programs generally take as little as 10 months to complete, whereas an associate in maintenance technology will take 2 years.

Certificate programs provide hands-on experience along with classroom training. Associate degree programs provide the same, plus additional prerequisite courses involving math, English, sciences, etc.

Whichever educational path you choose, you will likely learn the following and more:

  • Manual and automatic transmissions
  • Braking systems
  • Engine theory and systems 
  • Steering and suspension
  • Electrical theory and diagnosis
  • Alignment
  • Auto electricity and electronics
  • Manual transmissions and drivelines

Both a certificate and associate degree program are designed to help prepare you for ASE certifications if you choose to pursue them. ASE certification is not required, but it is encouraged. Earning an ASE certification can increase your future earning potential, and can help you stand out to employers during the hiring process.

Salary and Job Outlook

According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of automotive maintenance technology is expected to see little to no change by the year 2032. You can remain competitive in the job market by earning certain certifications like the ASE.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics also reports that in 2023 the average pay for maintenance technicians was $51,940, with the top 10 percent earning $77,630. Becoming a maintenance technician can be the perfect job for someone who enjoys working with their hands, has a passion for cars, and is technologically savvy.

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